Overall and Final Verdict
Every single time I take a look at an Asus motherboard I walk away impressed. The Maximus V Formula is no different and frankly I expected nothing less. I came into this review excited about the built in water cooling and I left impressed by Asus’s attention to detail. A good example of Asus’s focus can be seen with its Rear I/O panel. The blacked out I/O panel doesn’t cost any more than a light colored panel, but it shows that Asus knows the customer for the Formula V pays attention to every detail of their build to make sure everything fits together perfectly. The inclusion of a black SLI bridge is another example of this and even though this is a small feature I personally have gone out of my way to order black bridges on eBay in the past, this will save me way more than it cost Asus to go black rather than an ugly color.
I did have a small issue with the built in water cooling. I would have liked it more if I wasn’t limited to one tubing size. My preferred tubing size isn’t supported so I would have to step down a size or run two different size tubes to use this. But this is still better than nothing; I can deal with the downside. Frankly even without using the water cooling the heatsink looks amazing.
I talked in depth about the Asus Suite II software and the UEFI. This is because it is packed full of features and is well laid out and easy to work with. You could easily tweak and tune almost everything just using the software although if you do jump into the UEFI you will be even more impressed by the level of adjustability Asus includes. As of right now, I haven’t seen any other motherboard manufacture come close to the software that Asus provides with all of their motherboards. Not to be cliché but this is what sets the men away from the boys so to speak.
So the question is should you go pick up your own Maximus V Formula. Without a doubt it is packed full of features and is an amazing board. The biggest downside really is its price. At $299 it’s not a cheap board. The problem with the price isn’t that it’s not worth it, because like I said it’s an amazing motherboard. Asus just has a lot of great motherboards. Most people could spend $100 less and pick up something like the P8Z77-V Pro and have most of the same features. You really have to figure out if the water cooling, upgraded audio, and ROG styling is worth the extra money to you. Having said that, without a doubt the Maximus V Formula will find a home in a PC in my house very soon. If your budget allows it, I don’t think you can find a better motherboard.